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Where Dreamers Converge: The Arthur C. Clarke Collection

April 23, 2015

It’s difficult to quantify the mark left by Sir Arthur C. Clarke on society’s views of space and humanity. A writer, futurist, undersea explorer, and TV personality, Clarke was most notable for writing the screenplay for the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. Clarke’s creative interpretations of known science helped us grasp the ideas of truly living in a space age.

Clarke passed away in 2008 and his trust opened his personal effects to the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum. Recently FedEx donated shipment of the items from Clarke’s home in Sri Lanka to the museum in Washington DC.

Scores of documents, correspondence, and personal items were painstakingly evaluated on site at the Clarke home by the Smithsonian team.  After selection for inclusion in the museum collection, our FedEx team members provided expert packing assistance and specialized containers for the transportation of these invaluable items from Sri Lanka to a location halfway around the world in Washington DC. The shipping was provided free of charge by FedEx.

Dr. Martin Collins, curator in the Space History Department at the Smithsonian, commented “Arthur C. Clarke’s papers are a signature acquisition for the Smithsonian and the National Air and Space Museum.  We have the honor of preserving and making available to researchers Clarke’s prominent place in the cultural history of spaceflight.  Not least, the collection will enable the Museum to tell a richer story of how science fiction and futurism interacted with contemporaneous space achievements, shaping our ideas about exploration beyond the Earth.” [Read Dr. Collins blog about the Clarke collection.]

FedEx director of Citizenship, Jenny Robertson, on the collection: “Arthur C. Clarke once said, ‘The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the impossible’. FedEx is proud to play a role in the preservation of the papers of Arthur C. Clarke by donating the shipping for this historic collection,” said Jenny Robertson, Director, Corporate Citizenship, FedEx. [Read more about the Arthur C. Clarke collection in this article by Bruce Sterling for Smithsonian Magazine.]



    David Parks says:

    Great work! I remember Mr. Clarke coming to visit regularly when I was a child. My father and he were good friends and old skin-diving buddies…..

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